Our Mission

The Research Instrumentation Lab provides the UMD research community with high quality microanalytical data. Our mission is to educate researchers and students about the tools available to them and how best to utilize these resources to achieve their research and educational goals.

The lab is open for use by students, faculty and staff of UMD, as well as regional commercial and non-profit groups with a need for the analytical services the lab can provide. Learn more about Getting Started with our services if you'd like to take advantage of this excellent resource.

Modern Equipment

See a list of our equipment and the capabilities we can offer. The lab's manager is available for training, questions and assistance via the contact box information.


LIM5013 special lab session

LIM5013 students observe diatoms under SEM.


The lab is available for teaching as well.  GEOL5321 "Theory and Practice of Scanning Electron Microscopy & X-Ray Microanalysis" is a semester-long course taught using the lab's SEM.  In addition, any University of Minnesota academic unit can request ad-hoc lab sessions (fees may apply) using the laboratory space and resources.  Such special sessions have been taught for (including but not limited to):

- BIOL3601 Plant Biology

- CHE4502 Chemical Engineering Senior Design, CHE5131 Polymer Engineering

- GEOL5355 Economic Geology, GEOL2312 Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology

- LIM5013 Study of Inland Waters II

- CHEM4435 Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory

Campus & Community Resource

In addition to being available for outside groups in need of analytical services, the lab can be incorporated into the overall outreach efforts of Swenson College. We are eager to help educate the public about the technology needed to advance research on our campus and in the scientific community. For example, the laboratory hosted a SEM demonstration session for a group from UMD's University for Seniors in Spring 2017.